The Associated Press has just reported that Percy Harvin has requested a trade from the Minnesota Vikings. The knee-jerk reaction among fantasy-football-induced Ravens fans is quite predictable:
“Ozzie, go and get Percy Harvin!”
Hopefully Ozzie isn’t listening.
There is no hiding that the Ravens were looking to upgrade their wide receiving corps and their kick return game coming into this season. In March, the Ravens hosted Ted Ginn Jr. and after Jacoby Jones was released from the Houston Texans, he met with the Ravens and signed a two-year, $7 million deal on May 8.
Had Harvin requested his trade earlier in the offseason, it’s possible that the Ravens may have thrown their hat in the ring. But the Ravens have already invested in Jones and the last time I checked, the financial resources now available to Ozzie are barely enough to cover a Justin Blackmon bar tab much less an expensive addition like Harvin.
And don’t expect Ozzie to have any thoughts of buyer’s remorse when it comes to Jones just yet. Even if both players were simultaneously made available, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Ozzie would choose the more explosive Harvin over Jones. Let’s not forget the compass that guides Ozzie’s personnel decisions – the “right player, right price” credo.
The impetus behind Harvin’s request as of now is unknown and being kept “in house.” But one would have to believe that upon his trade, Harvin would also be seeking a contract extension. Harvin still has two years left on his rookie deal and will make $2.5 million this year and $2 million in the final year of his contract.
Even the Vikings are having issues committing the money to the 2009 AP NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year and clearly they understand more than anyone else the impact a healthy Harvin has on their offense and the significant complementary support he provides to Adrian Peterson.
But Harvin’s history of injuries renders him undependable. Dating back to his college days at the University of Florida he has struggled to stay on the field. Migraines have plagued him and let’s not forget the uncertainty of offseason his shoulder surgery or what Ozzie would have to give up to land the speedy receiver.
All things considered, Percy Harvin will not follow in the footsteps of Matt Birk and trade in one shade of purple for another.
Nor should you want him to.